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Kelly McDonald

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Crafting the Customer Experience for People Not Like You

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2 Video(s) By This Presenter

Kelly McDonald
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7 Programs By This Presenter

Diversity in the workforce is a hot topic.   Many employers are under pressure to make sure their workforce and employee base is diverse, inclusive and representative of the customers they serve.  The most progressive organizations value diversity because they realize that a diverse workforce has positive impact on the bottom line.  Such a workforce doesn’t just lead to better decisions and solutions and innovation – it has been proven to grow business and profits.  And a diverse workforce doesn’t just mean employees of different racial and ethnic backgrounds; it can also mean diversity of thought.

There are numerous ways we can be “diverse”:  A new mom is in a very different place than one who is an empty nester.  Someone with a master’s degree is very different than someone who went to a vocational/technical college.  Someone who is foreign-born is different than someone who is U.S. born.  “People not like you” takes away the baggage that is often associated with the word diversity and frames the subject in a more relatable way.  We are ALL dealing with people “not like us”.  Sometimes that can be frustrating, but it doesn’t have to be.

When working with people who are not like you, friction can arise.  Different people may not see eye-to-eye on an issue.  They may have vastly different approaches to work.  Their communication styles may be very different.  Their comfort in working with technology may be miles apart.  Cultural backgrounds and norms can differ.  Even men and women can see situations differently.  How do you work alongside someone who may be quite different from you, respect those differences and be effective in your role?

And what about leading a diverse team?  Leaders face daily the challenges of inspiring, communicating and executing strategy with their teams.  Now imagine the challenges of leading teams that may be incredibly diverse!   How does one motivate and lead groups of people who come from different backgrounds?  How do you do that when people are motivated by different values and view the world and work through different lenses?

This session takes the topic of work and leadership to a new place – one that is getting more attention every day and will continue to do so.

Learner Outcomes:

  • You’ll learn why diversity at work is important, but why it seems so hard to work with people not like you. And why that makes you NORMAL, not a bad person.  You’ll learn why it often comes with stress, complex emotions and even fear for some people.
  • Specific tactics will be shared for how employees can succeed in today’s diverse workplace without losing their minds or becoming frustrated by approaches to work that may differ from theirs.
  • For those in leadership positions, or those who aspire to manage and lead others, three key steps to make a diverse team work more cohesively, more productively and enjoyably.
  • The four key words that will transform how you interact with your colleagues and associates in tough situations to get the best outcome.  How to troubleshoot the complex issues and address the “derailers” and naysayers that lurk within every organization and threaten its success.

Corporate America is not very diverse; we’re a long way off from having equal representation of people of color in many organizations, especially in key executive and leadership positions. Many White leaders want to create change, but don’t know how.  How do you know where your blind spots are that can create obstacles for people of color?

And how do you address the issues and comments that come up when employees feel nervous, resentful or uncomfortable as you make headway on diversity in your organization?

Your intentions may be sincere and heartfelt, but intentions aren’t enough.  If you don’t know how you come across to others and you don’t know how to build bridges, people can be offended, jobs can be lost, and lawsuits can be filed.  This session (and the book) are not approaching this from the standpoint of social activism or from an HR perspective. This is the roadmap for how White businesspeople can successfully create a fair and equitable workplace for all, one that recognizes diverse talent and fosters productive and constructive conversations across different perspectives that make business better – for everyone.

You’ll learn:

  • Well-intended things people say that are hurtful or offensive to others
  • The excuses people use to avoid doing anything about diversity
  • Why your diversity & inclusion efforts haven’t done the job
  • How to talk about race in helpful and positive ways:  do’s & don’ts
  • Answers to tough employee questions or racist remarks
  • Where to start when you don’t know where to start – an 8-step framework that will show you, step-by-step, how to become a more diverse and inclusive company, department or team.
  • How to effectively recruit and interview diverse candidates
  • How to build business relationships with people who are different from you
  • For leaders, how to set the example, reduce tokenism, and deal with naysayers and derailers.  How to avoid “Launch & Abandon” with your diversity efforts.

The demographic, lifestyle and social shifts that are occurring in the U.S. are startling and profound.  One in three Americans is not White.  Four states have “minority majority” populations.  Rural communities are losing population fast.  Young people increasingly are opting not to get married.  Consumers trust their friends’ recommendations more than they trust marketing messages.  More than 25% of young adults are living with their parents.  Families no longer consist of simply “mom, dad, kids and dog” – traditional family structure has shifted to include every possible definition of family and every kind of family living arrangement.

Customer expectations of what businesses “should” be are changing.

It’s imperative that you understand the new demographics and shifts, the way that people live today and what’s important to them.  Your business and growth depend on it.  How can you effectively serve your customers and community if you don’t know who they are and what they need and value?

And these new consumer and business shifts take many forms:  racial, ethnic, gender, generational, sexual preference, linguistic, even lifestage and even communication styles, to name a few.  This presentation will focus on the new demographics and how these affect your business today and tomorrow.

You’ll learn:

  • The five biggest macro trends and what they mean for your business right now – and what you can do to harness potential business in the future
  • Specific implications for all aspects of business (sales, marketing, recruiting & retention, human resources and customer service).   Do’s and don’ts will be covered.
  • Five things you can do RIGHT NOW to leverage these shifts and changes that don’t cost one dime or take a year to initiate at your company.

Networking has always been a key aspect of growing your career and your business.   But the traditional way of networking – attending events and schmoozing with prospects and contacts – is viewed as old school now.  It’s not how savvy professionals approach it.

Today’s networking is about connecting in meaningful ways across broad groups of people with the goal of serving others.  It’s less about making a sale and more about making a difference.   With the goal rooted in this selfless manner, the approach is very different than what yesterday’s networking looked like – and the results are profoundly different.

And effective networking isn’t only for those trying to cultivate new customers – it’s essential for cultivating relationships within your organization.  People move forward in their careers and roles because of their talent – AND their visibility.

Networking is for everyone.  Whether your goal is to advance professionally and take on challenging new roles inside your organization or grow your business and sales from the outside, it’s imperative that you know the do’s and don’ts for to be effective in your efforts.

In this session, you’ll learn:

  • What effective networking is – and what it isn’t  (HINT:  it’s not about making a sale)
  • The 10 Reasons you should spend time on networking
  • How networking should change when dealing with people of different generations
  • The rules: specific Do’s & Don’ts so you crush it and don’t waste time
  • Networking mistakes to avoid
  • How to network effectively now, when you can’t have personal contact with peers and prospects

If you could grow your business simply by marketing to your existing clients and raking in more referrals, making money would be a cakewalk. But to generate new revenue, you have to win over the customers and clients you’re not getting, but could be.   Now, more than ever, it’s important to reach new prospects in different ways to grow your business.

As a commercial real estate professional, you know how important it is to form a connection with your clients and prospects in order to close the sale.  But how do you form a connection with someone who is completely different from you?  Whether it’s gender, age, lifestage, race, ethnicity or even communication preferences, you need to be able to break through barriers to connect in a meaningful way, build trust and differentiate yourself from your competition.

People spend money on what they care about.   Show your customers and prospects how your products fit into what they need and what they value, and they’ll show you the money.   By recognizing people’s differences and tailoring your sales message or approach to reflect their values, you‘ll get the business.

This session will show how tapping into people’s values is the way to greater sales and customer loyalty.

Using consumer insights and real-world examples from successful companies “People Don’t Buy Products, They Buy Solutions” shows you how to reach new customers’ hearts, minds, and, ultimately, their wallets.

You’ll learn:

  • The do’s and don’ts of marketing to different customer segments and their values
  • How to tweak your sales approach to be relevant to a new customer group
  • How to communicate in a relevant manner to stand out from your competition

It appears WFH and working virtually is here to stay – at least for the foreseeable future.  That means you need to acquire new sales and customer service skills to provide your customers and prospects an exceptional experience, just like you did when you could see them and work with them face-to-face.

You know how to sell.  You know how to communicate effectively with your customers. Now you just need to know how the strong skills you already have translate to the virtual world.  It’s different, but not that difficult.   And it’s critical, so you don’t lose the traction and momentum you’ve worked so hard to build.  You can OWN and conquer this virtual world!

In This Info-Packed,  Webcast, You’ll Learn:

  • First things first:   the basic and inexpensive tools/equipment you need to look like a rockstar on camera – and simple tips and do’s & don’ts to make you look pulled-together, polished and professional.
  • The 5 most effective virtual selling techniques and why they work
  • The most beneficial communication techniques and approaches that clients and prospects are receptive to and that demonstrate that you know how to provide exceptional service.  And the EXACT words they need to hear from you now.
  • How to communicate your value to your clients, so there is no doubt you’re the problem-solver and solution provider
  • Specific examples will be used to illustrate effective techniques
  • Do’s & Don’ts will be covered in detail

“Assertiveness” is a widely misunderstood characteristic.   Some interpret it as being “bossy”; some interpret it as “standing your ground” or “speaking your mind” and some interpret it as “taking charge” or being aggressive.

Assertiveness is none of these things, yet it’s an essential skill in business and a quality that all successful leaders have.  And it IS a skill – it can be developed and honed, like any other skill.

For women, in particular, being assertive can be challenging, because we tend to be “people pleasers” and we often put the needs of the group (your team or your associates) before our own needs.  Being assertive is not at odds with teamwork – in fact, it is constructive for your team and your organization.  Assertiveness is a management and performance quality that is highly charismatic and appealing.

You’ll learn:

  • What assertiveness is – and what it’s not
  • How to develop your assertive style in a manner that appeals, not repels
  • How to communicate, empower and lead in a male-dominated industry
  • How young women executives see you – and what inspires them most

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